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Flagstaff, Arizona
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Backpacking: Summer Rim-to-Rim

The Ultimate Grand Canyon Trek

Backpacking: Summer Rim-to-Rim

$1545 per adult

Rim to Rim Backpacking on trail


Any trip into the canyon is awe-inspiring, but the uniqueness of this adventure is the opportunity to hike all the way across from one side to the other, experiencing the great diversity of each rim and everything in between!

Our journey begins at 8,000 feet above sea level in the cool forests of the north rim. Two full days will be spent descending to the bottom of the canyon along the North Kaibab Trail, followed by two days of climbing the world-famous Bright Angel Trail up to the south rim. Mesmerizing scenery awaits around every corner.

Along the way, we will visit iconic sights such as Ribbon Falls, a spectacular waterfall that provides a refreshing oasis in the desert, Phantom Ranch, the historic and rustic resort at the bottom of the canyon, and Plateau Point, which offers one of the most spectacular vistas you can find in the canyon! These are just a few of the many highlights of this incredible adventure.

Summer in the Grand Canyon brings with it extreme heat. Daytime highs below the rim regularly exceed 105°.  The itinerary for this trip is altered to limit heat exposure, but it still comes with heightened risk and is not for everyone.  The summer itinerary typically requires rising as early as 2 AM to take advantage of the cool morning hours for hiking.  Our goal is to finish the day’s hiking before lunchtime.  Afternoons will be spent lounging in the shade or even in the creek to stay cool.  For a cooler experience, check out our Fall Rim-to-Rim or Winter Rim-to-Rim-to-Rim.

Be sure to click the tabs above for additional trip details and information.

   Trip Type: Backpacking

   Duration: 5 days

    Distance: 24 miles

    Origin: Flagstaff, AZ

  Cost: 2024 – $1,545   |   2025 – $1,645

   Difficulty: Details

   Solitude: Details





Questions? Send us an email or give us a call at 928-251-3000.


Grand Canyon Bright Angel Trail Header


Unbelievable vistas Towering canyon walls Beautiful creeks and streams
Wildflowers Starlit skies Historic trails
Desert oasis camping Colorado River crossing Waterfalls
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  • Departure/Return Location
    Flagstaff, AZ



Our adventure begins in Flagstaff, Arizona. We will meet in the morning for orientation before making our 4-hour drive to the North Rim.

A stop at the historic Navajo Bridge is a highlight we won’t miss along the way. Peering down to the Colorado River 500’ below, we will likely see the majestic California Condor nearby and maybe a party of rafters floating down the river.

Continuing on, we will reach the North Rim in time to soak in the views and enjoy dinner before an early bedtime. Camp is amongst the cool pines near our trailhead, but we will be waking well before the sun rises to begin our journey.

  • Hiking distance: 7 miles
  • Elevation loss: 4,160’
  • Destination: Cottonwood Campground

Descending the North Kaibab Trail, the scenery is absolutely stunning as we traverse along towering cliffs and navigate breathtaking gorges. Roaring Springs pours out from the rock and feeds into Bright Angel Creek, which we will soon be hiking alongside.

With an abundant water supply, the canyon floor here flourishes with vegetation, creating the perfect setting for our first night at Cottonwood Campground.

  • Hiking distance: 7 miles
  • Elevation loss: 1,600’
  • Destination: Bright Angel Campground

Our third day will seem entirely different from the second. The drop in elevation is considerably less, but the views are no less astounding. Not far from camp, we will take a short side hike to the beautiful Ribbon Falls. From there we will eventually find ourselves entering The Box.

This section of the trail hugs the creek closely as it winds its way through the towering basement rock of the Grand Canyon. Massive folds and faults in the rock give evidence of powerful forces that molded these rocks like putty in the not-so-distant past.

The Box will eventually lead us to our second camp at Bright Angel Campground adjacent to the Colorado River. Also close by is the historic Phantom Ranch where an ice-cold glass of delicious lemonade awaits!

  • Hiking distance: 4.5 miles
  • Elevation gain: 1,500’
  • Destination: Havasupai Gardens Campground

Today’s hike takes us along the Colorado River through a section of the impressive inner gorge before turning up the Pipe Creek drainage.

The climbing will be tough, but we will be rewarded with refreshing pools and a beautiful oasis, Havasupai Gardens (formerly known as Indian Garden), where we will camp for the night.

Before settling in for the evening, however, we will not miss an opportunity for a side-hike out to Plateau Point to enjoy a spectacular sunset experience.

Day 5
  • Hiking distance: 4.5 miles
  • Elevation gain: 3,000’
  • Destination: South Rim
  • Drive to Flagstaff: 1.5 hours

Our final day brings a challenging but rewarding climb back to the top, where we will celebrate our accomplishments and reflect on all that we have learned and experienced.

*Itinerary is subject to change and may occasionally be altered based upon weather, campsite availability, access restrictions, guest ability or injury, or other factors outside of our control.



What we provide

  • A professional guide with wilderness medical training and a passion for the biblical message of the canyon
  • All necessary equipment: backpack, tent, sleeping bag, sleeping pad, trekking poles, crampons/microspikes in winter
  • All cooking and eating equipment: bowls, cups, utensils
  • Ten meals, starting with lunch on the first day and ending with lunch on the last day, all prepared by your guide (We can generally accommodate allergies and dietary restrictions.)
  • Snacks
  • Entrance fees and backcountry permits
  • A complimentary copy of Your Guide to the Grand Canyon, an excellent book on the geology of the Grand Canyon from a creation perspective
  • Emergency equipment: first-aid kit and satellite phone

What we do not provide

  • Transportation to and from Flagstaff
  • Lodging before or after the scheduled dates of your trip
  • Clothing, including raingear and footwear
  • Personal items, including toiletries and sunscreen
  • Water bottles or hydration bladder
  • Headlamp or flashlight

What you should bring

  • Clothing: we will provide a detailed list of recommended items when you register
  • Toiletries, sunscreen, and lip balm
  • Water bottles
  • Flashlight or headlamp
  • Personal items such as a Bible, book, writing or sketching materials
  • Camera
  • Cash if desired for purchases at Phantom Ranch or the South Rim


Meeting location

The first morning of our trip, we will meet for orientation at a convenient location in Flagstaff, followed by driving together up to the North Rim.


The orientation is an important time of preparation for our journey.  We will check all equipment for proper fit, review important safety information, and discuss logistics.  We will also examine some important passages of Scripture to set the stage for what we will be seeing over the coming days.

Starting and ending time

At orientation, your guide will inform you of your hiking start time for the next morning.  This may vary depending upon several factors, but we generally will get started on the first day between 5 am and 7 am. End time will also vary based upon hiking speed, weather conditions, and other factors.  We will typically be back to the rim on the final day by mid-afternoon.


It is impossible to eliminate all risk from any outdoor adventure. The Grand Canyon, in particular, is an extreme environment with many opportunities for illness and injury. Our guides are all certified Wilderness First Responders, which means they have gone through intensive training to prepare for a wide variety of emergency scenarios in a backcountry context. If you have specific questions about safety, medical conditions, or fitness requirements, please give us a call.

Group size

A typical trip will consist of up to 5 guests and 1 guide.  Larger groups of up to 9 guests can be accommodated, but may require more advanced planning.

Age restrictions

Children must be at least 12 years old to participate in most backpacking trips.  This may be negotiable for private trips or in special circumstances.  Please contact us with any questions regarding this restriction.


Temperatures vary greatly at the Grand Canyon, and popular weather apps can often be misleading.  When looking up a weather forecast, be careful to determine whether your source is providing information for the top of the canyon or the bottom; it is not always clear at first glance.  The temperature at the bottom of the canyon is typically 20-30 degrees Fahrenheit warmer than at the top. When you register, we will provide a list of recommended clothing, and your guide will address season-specific weather expectations with you ahead of time. For detailed weather information, please visit the park service’s weather page: https://www.nps.gov/grca/planyourvisit/weather-condition.htm


Flagstaff is the closest large town to the Grand Canyon and offers many hotels if needed, as well as outfitter shops for last-minute gear purchases.  The drive from Flagstaff to the canyon is approximately 1.5 hours.  An airport is available in Flagstaff; however, many guests find it more economical to fly into Phoenix. From the Phoenix airport, you can rent a car and drive approximately 2 hours to Flagstaff.  Alternatively, Groome Transportation offers daily shuttle service from the Phoenix airport to Flagstaff and from Flagstaff to the Grand Canyon.
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